I seem to have read a lot of books by Mary Gordon over the years. I'm not sure why this is the case because, on balance, I don't care for her writing all that much. (I want to take her and shake her and tell her to get over all that idiotic Catholic guilt and related rubbish already, and get on with her life. Similarly, does any writer really need to grind out a memoir about her father and a separate one about her mother - just get over it and move on already, lady - you're obviously smart - time to live your own freaking life!)
This collection has the virtue of being just edited by her. It's a pretty fun collection, as a result.
The only other writer who provokes in me the same desire to shake her and yell "Snap out of it, already!" is the terminally wan Anita Brookner, with her infinite collection of pale, miserable, self-absorbed heroines who severely need to get a grip and get on with life. Just sayin'.
OK: Mary Gordon, she does write well. I have to give her that. But exasperatingly.